On November 4, 2009, then-5-month old, 28-week ex-preemie, male suffered severe respiratory distress while resting with his mother. Upon arrival of paramedics, the child was started with oxygen and Albuterol. Despite the request of EMS to bring the child to The University of Chicago Medical Center's Comer Children’s Hospital where there was a Level 1 Trauma Center, the ambulance was directed by telemetry (operated out of The University of Chicago Medical Center (“UCMC”)) to take the child to a community hospital without a pediatric emergency department.
Shortly after his arrival at the hospital, the child grew more unstable, a transport was ordered to take the child to Comer Children’s Hospital, and, in order to secure his airway, intubation efforts were begun by both an emergency medicine physician and the on-call anesthesiologist.
Upon the arrival of UCMC’S Aeromedical Network (“UCAN”) transfer team that included a “flight” physician and nurse, the child’s endotracheal tube became dislodged and SaO2 went to 78%. Despite the efforts of the UCAN team to re-intubate the child, the child arrested and UCAN team continued CPR while en route to UCMC.
Upon arrival at UCMC (Comer ER), the child was intubated with an uncuffed 2.5 ETT (12 cm at the lip) with good chest rise, good blood pressure, good pulse, and CPR stopped. Following the events of November 4th, the child had a devastating hypoxic ischemic insult to his brain and died on April 1, 2010.
NOTE: After the November 4th event, while at UCMC, the child was diagnosed with significant stenosis of the trachea proximal to the carina as a result of six complete tracheal rings (2-2.5 cm). Defendants contend that the existence of these previously-unknown complete tracheal rings made his intubation and maintaining that intubation difficult while at the community hospital